Plateau: Court faults dissolution of elected council officials  

High Court

A Plateau State High Court, sitting in Jos has ruled that Governor Simon Lalong has no powers to dissolve elected Local Council councilors in the state.

The Court also set aside the Local Government Law, which the governor relied on to remove the democratically elected council officials.

Justice David Mann, who delivered the judgment on Friday, in Jos said Section 41 sub-section 4 of 2007 Local Government Laws of the state, which empowers the governor to dissolve council officials is at variance with section 7 of the 1999 constitution, as amended and therefore null and void.

Lalong had in 2015 dissolved the councils shortly after assuming office.

The councilors who mobilised to the court in large numbers were, however, disappointed when the court ruled against their reinstatement.

According to the judge, the 2007 Local Government Law, which was amended in 2008, only stipulates a two-year tenure for the councilors, adding that since they were elected in 2014, their two-year tenure ought to have expired  in 2016.

Counsel to the plaintiff, Gyang ZI said although there was no consequential order by the court to reinstate the ousted councilors, his clients have been vindicated by the court’s pronouncement declaring the action of the governor illegal.

On his part, Nanle Kumak who is counsel to Lalong and three others joined in the suit said they would abide by the court judgment.

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